Efficient engineering of marker-free synthetic allotetraploids of Saccharomyces

Fungal Genet Biol. 2016 Apr:89:10-17. doi: 10.1016/j.fgb.2015.11.002. Epub 2015 Nov 7.


Saccharomyces interspecies hybrids are critical biocatalysts in the fermented beverage industry, including in the production of lager beers, Belgian ales, ciders, and cold-fermented wines. Current methods for making synthetic interspecies hybrids are cumbersome and/or require genome modifications. We have developed a simple, robust, and efficient method for generating allotetraploid strains of prototrophic Saccharomyces without sporulation or nuclear genome manipulation. S. cerevisiae×S. eubayanus, S. cerevisiae×S. kudriavzevii, and S. cerevisiae×S. uvarum designer hybrid strains were created as synthetic lager, Belgian, and cider strains, respectively. The ploidy and hybrid nature of the strains were confirmed using flow cytometry and PCR-RFLP analysis, respectively. This method provides an efficient means for producing novel synthetic hybrids for beverage and biofuel production, as well as for constructing tetraploids to be used for basic research in evolutionary genetics and genome stability.

Keywords: Biofuels; Brewing; Hybrids; Prototrophic; Saccharomyces; Synthetic zymurgy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Beer
  • Biofuels
  • Bioreactors
  • DNA, Fungal / genetics
  • Fermentation / genetics
  • Genetic Engineering / methods*
  • Genome, Fungal
  • Hybridization, Genetic
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Polymorphism, Restriction Fragment Length
  • Saccharomyces / genetics*
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / genetics
  • Tetraploidy*
  • Wine


  • Biofuels
  • DNA, Fungal